Year of the Dog…Guest post by Austin Dixon, L.Ac

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I love the new year. It is the perfect time for reflection and new intentions as well as cleaning up and cleaning out. I love getting rid of what no longer serves a purpose in my life and freeing up some space for newness and change. This process is not always easy but there is beauty in the struggle and always an opportunity to learn something new. However, the expectation that we change our behaviors immediately and sometimes drastically is unrealistic without easing into it or doing some serious planning. That is why I consider the first few months of the year as my time to ease into my new habits and intentions. It is nice that the Chinese New Year comes anywhere between a few weeks to a month and a half after the Gregorian calendar celebrates the New Year. Though I am not Chinese, I enjoy learning about other cultures and their approach to the new year and self improvement. It is an additional time to reflect, learn, and fine tune my intentions.

 

According to the lunar calendar the Chinese New Year begins February 16, 2018 and lasts until February 4, 2019. Each year is associated with a zodiac animal; this year is the year of the Dog. The year of the Dog comes every 12 years. The years are also associated with the five elements, Earth, Metal, Water, Wood, and Fire. This year is the year of the Earth Dog. The Earth Dog comes around every 60 years. Though it is considered bad luck if the zodiac animal of the year is the same as the year you were born in, a little heads up can help you be aware and possibly aid in some decision making. I am just going to skim the surface on this topic. You can definitely go deeper into the subject if you desire. At the very least these predictions can be entertaining and give you something to consider when setting new intentions for the new year.

 

The characteristics of people born in the dog years are said to have some of the most desirable human qualities. They are loyal, honest, amiable, and kind. They don’t need much in the way of material things and are happy with the basics, food, shelter, water, and a little love. They work hard and rest hard, a nice balance of yang and yin energy. On the flip side, they can be stubborn, self surviving, and have a brutal bite.

 

The year of the Dog is predicted to be good for business and technology and a great time to make lifestyle changes.  It is said that this year is a perfect time to start a new business or start learning something new. Health might be a bit more challenging for folks so it seems that this is a great time to focus on eating a balanced diet, limiting sugar, getting lots of sleep, and exercise. Dogs like to work hard, play hard, and rest hard. It will be extra important to rest and rejuvenate after work and social events.  Unfortunately, the year of the Dog may bring political turmoil (shocking). I don’t think anyone is surprised by this. Our current president is a dog.

 

I hope this post has given you something to think about and inspired you to get rid of something (physical or emotional), set a new intention, or motivated you to put your health at the top of the To Do List. Happy New Year, y’all!

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Healthy Eating: 10 Spice Vegetable Soup

Guest post by Lorien Armour:

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I just made my first soup EVER and it’s delicious!  I used Oh She Glows’ 10-spice vegetable soup recipe as a guide, but made some substitutions and left out a couple spices because I didn’t have them (and forgot them at the market–oops).  I think the best substitution I did was the using a Japanese sweet potato–it really added a nice sweetness in contrast to the cayenne pepper seasoning.  Also, the cashew “milk” adds a nice creaminess to the veggie broth/tomato base.  And it freezes well!  I can’t wait to make this and other soups all Fall and Winter!

Check out Lorien’s full bio and class schedule on our website!

Healthy Eating: Thai Peanut Empowered Noodle Bowl

One of my goals for this blog was to provide information on all areas of Healthy Living, therefore I have decided to start posting healthy recipes from our clients and staff!  If you have a recipe you would like to share, please let me know.  We will mainly be sharing recipes that incorporate seasonal, whole foods.
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The first recipe is a suggestion from Lorien, one of our fabulous Pilates instructors.  Lorien has been making a conscious effort to eat more fresh foods and this is one of her favorite new recipes.
She made this delicious recipe substituting summer squash for the cucumber and agave for sugar.  It tasted so yummy and she loved the feeling she got from eating this light and fresh meal!
This recipe is from another blog (ohmyveggies.com) and comes from a great cookbook:  The Oh She Glows Cookbook: Over 100 Vegan Recipes to Glow From The Inside Out.  How could we NOT love a cookbook with that title?!
**Check out Lorien’s bio on our staff page and join her for a private or class!**
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